Behind the Scenes at King of the Hammers (and more Racing Updates)

I came, I saw, I lost cell service.

I’m still a little jet lagged from my adventure to Johnson Valley, Calif., for the 2019 Nitto King of the Hammers. And I’m potentially still a tad seasick from all the off-roading. But to say this was one of my favorite races ever is an understatement. And I didn’t even get to see any of the big races.

Here’s a rundown of how #TeamAMSOIL fared last week in Hammertown.

Can-Am UTV Race

AMSOIL Rock Royalty’s very own Wayland Campbell finished the day in second place behind Mitch Guthrie Jr. In a race that many veterans struggle to finish, Bryce Menzies finished his very first King of the Hammers race in an impressive seventh place.

Check out Menzies’ recap.

4-Wheel Parts Every Man Challenge

Prior to Wednesday’s Every Man Challenge, Brad and Roger Lovell towed their race rig and crew up to a staged whoops section to test out new shocks they just had installed on their rock crawler. I followed along in the chase truck to shoot video and take pictures for social media. We left the testing with Brad and Roger confident their vehicle was ready to tackle Wednesday’s race.

And that they did, finishing second in the event. Cold weather (for California) forced them to pick up winter gloves at one of their pit stops. A burned wire loom disabled their navigation system, presenting another challenge, but the brothers ably self-navigated and ended up finishing in just over five and a half hours.

New this year, AMSOIL After Dark featured interviews with key players throughout the week. Check out the episode below where host Tiffany Stone interviews Brad Lovell. Check out more AMSOIL After Dark episodes here.

Nitto King of the Hammers

As exciting as they were, the aforementioned races were just a teaser leading up to the title event of the week, the Nitto King of the Hammers race. Competitors must complete the gnarly 200-plus-mile desert/rock course and reach the designated checkpoints in less than 14 hours. Everything must be completed within 100 feet of the centerline of the course. First one to cross the finish line earns the title “King of the Hammers.”

For this year’s event, 111 racers took off from the start line in Hammertown; only 29 finished. Of those 29, AMSOIL-sponsored driver Shannon Campbell was third. His daughter and Rock Royalty member Bailey Campbell finished eighth.

So, what’s on tap, fellow race fans? A lot.

  • USAC Sprint Car racing kicks off this weekend in Florida
  • The 36th running of the Iron Dog snowmobile race kicks off Sunday, Feb. 17 in Alaska
  • In diesel news, the Northwest Dyno Circuit heads to Groveland, Fla., Feb. 22-24
  • AMSOIL GNCC starts its 2019 season Feb. 23-24 in Union, S.C.

Did you catch all that? Be sure to tune into our social media channels to stay in the know of all things #TeamAMSOIL.

We’ll see you at the races!

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